Some Lesser Known Facts About Roman Reigns
- Does Roman Reigns smoke?: No
- Does Roman Reigns drink alcohol?: Yes
- Roman was born into the legendary American Samoan Anoa’i family, with a huge legacy of professional wrestlers.
- His father, Sika Anoa’i, is a WWE Hall of Fame and best known as the member of the WWF tag team ‘The Wild Samoans.’
- He is the first cousin to ‘The Usos,’ which consists of the two real-life twin brothers Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso, and is related to Yokozuna, Umaga, and Rikishi. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Roman Reigns are distant cousins; as their grandfathers – Peter Maivia and Amituana Anoa’i – were blood brothers.
- He was always fascinated by American Football and was a standout player in high school. He played his first 3 years at Pensacola Catholic High School and his senior year at Escambia High School, where he did 120 tackles, 12 sacks, and 6 forced fumbles.
- As a high school senior, he won the ‘Defensive Player of the Year’ award that earned him a deal with ‘Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets,’ as a defensive tackle. He had an impressive long stint of 4 years over there as he was named to the 2006 All-ACC First Team after recording 40 tackles with 9 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks and racked up a total of 29.5 tackles for loss and 12 sacks.
- His football career started fading away in 2007 when he was signed by American football team, ‘Minnesota Vikings’ but released him just after a month. Again, in August 2007, he was signed by ‘Jacksonville Jaguars,’ but was released in a similar fashion within a week.
- After he bid farewell to his football career, he decided to make his career in professional wrestling to take family legacy forward. He was initially trained by his father, Sika Anoa’i, and his uncle, Afa Anoa’i, and later, as by the crew at Florida Championship Wrestling.
- In 2010, he signed a developmental contract with the WWE in 2010 and was drafted to FCW, with the ring name “Leakee.”
- He lost his debut FCW match to Richie Steamboat, and got his first win against Fahd Rakman.
- When he was supposed to decide his new ring name after the rebranding of FCW to NXT in 2012, he already had the first name “Roman” in his mind, but he wasn’t sure about the last name. He got the idea for his last name “Reigns” from an FCW talent, Calvin Raines, and after changing the spelling, he decided to use “Reigns.”
- His NXT career in singles competitions lasted for only 3 matches, after which, he was called up to the main roster with ‘The Shield.’ Very few people know that the idea of ‘The Shield’ came from CM Punk, who suggested Vince McMahon and Triple H to form a trio of either Chris Hero or Kassius Ohno with Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, as part of his security. Both Vince and Triple H liked the idea, but they wanted Roman Reigns in place of Chris Hero or Kassius Ohno, which proved to be a masterstroke; as ‘The Shield’ made it to the next level.
- In 2012, ‘The Shield’ made an astonishing debut on the WWE main roster by attacking Ryback and John Cena during the Survivor Series pay-per-view by helping out CM Punk to retain the WWE Championship.
- He benefitted the most out of ‘The Shield’ as after the dissolution of ‘The Shield’ in 2014, Vince McMahon and company wanted to project Roman as the next John Cena.
- His spark in the singles competitions came out when he eliminated a record 12 superstars at the 2014 edition of ‘Royal Rumble,’ thus breaking the record of 11 eliminations held by Kane in 2001.
- He received a 4.5 rating from the prolific wrestling expert, Dave Meltzer, for his debut match at TLC 2012, which even The Rock and The Undertaker didn’t get.
- He has one of the most popular tattoos in the WWE, with a traditional reason behind it. He has a turtle tattoo on his wrist, which is a symbol of family, wellness, longevity and peace in Samoan culture. The ink is a representation of Reigns’ dedication to his daughter; he was quoted as saying, “My purpose in this world, as any father would say, is to protect her.”
- He is one of the most polarised WWE Superstar and has been booed and trolled a lot during his presence in the WWE arena. Despite being the face of WWE after John Cena, he is being criticised mainly because the fans think that he has been given way more opportunities than he deserves, his below-par mic skills, and his bland character.
- Roman first met his wife Galina while they both were students at Georgia Institute of Technology.
- His elder brother Matt Anoa’i aka Rosey was a WWE Superstar from 2002 to 2006, who also starred in the TV reality show ‘Fat March.’
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